Prescription Pill Abuse Among the Suburbs
The perception that suburban areas are insulated from problems like drug and alcohol abuse is slowly fading. As more and more people outside the city find themselves facing chronic pain and disease, they head to the doctor for help. Visiting the doctor after a car accident, back injury or for chronic migraines might result in a prescription for any number of popular narcotics brands. And that’s where the problem begins.
Oxycontin, Vicodin, and Percocet are widely prescribed and highly addictive. Maybe it’s not physical pain you’re coping with, but chronic emotional and mental stress. In this case, a doctor might offer you Xanax, Ativan, or Valium. These are powerful psychotropic drugs in the benzodiazepine family, proven to be addictive and suspected to cause brain damage.1
Nutrition and Lifestyle Ignored by Doctors in Favor of Prescription Medication
For millions of people in the suburban United States, prescription pill abuse stems from conditions relating to chronic stress and malnutrition.2, 3 Visiting the doctor often results in a prescription that claims to mitigate the symptoms. The cause of the problem is rarely discussed in detail. Discussions of diet and nutrition may be deferred to a special nutritionist, and lifestyle recommendations might be summed up by a quick admonition to get some sleep and exercise more.
Once people are on a prescription, unpleasant side effects may cause them to go back to the doctor and obtain another one. The increasing number of pills in suburban medicine cabinets can lead to prescription pill abuse or theft by anyone with access to them.4
Wide Availability Creates the Conditions for Abuse
With so many suburban Americans experiencing low wages, high unemployment, and chronic diseases caused by poor diet and sedentary lifestyles, it’s not surprising that the use of prescriptions in these areas is widespread. With more and more people getting prescriptions for these drugs from their doctors, the supply in the suburbs goes up. This creates opportunity for theft and scams that put these drugs into the hands of people suffering from drug addiction, leading to a 33% increase of prescription pill abuse in five years.5
Getting Help With Recovery Is Possible
Don’t let the prescription pill abuse trend continue to damage your life or the life of someone you love. Recovery Connection is here to help with your questions. We can show you how to get help with your own recovery. We have resources that can assist you with helping those that you love. Recovery from addiction isn’t easy, but it can be done with professional help. Call us today at 800-993-3869 and let us help you.
- “Brain Damage from Benzodiazepines: The Troubling Facts, Risks, and History of Minor Tranquilizers,” last updated November 2010, https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/side-effects/201011/brain-damage-benzodiazepines-the-troubling-facts-risks-and-history-minor
- “Life Event, Stress and Illness,” last updated October 2008, http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3341916/
- “National Health Priorities,” 2010, https://cspinet.org/new/pdf/cdc_briefing_book_fy10.pdf
- “Medication Theft: Protecting Our Most Vulnerable Neighbors,” http://www.nnw.org/publication/medication-theft-protecting-our-most-vulnerable-neighbors
- “As the heroin epidemic rises, the access to rehabs declines,” http://www.suburbanheroin.com/#sthash.i9cejvjf.dpuf